Put The Teakettle On, Tibetans Are Coming!

Todays blog is a direct transcript from 2002 with only minor transcribers editing. I have learned so much since arriving here in June 2000. Even the past two months I have learned so many new words, grammar using and communication through writing. I thank you all for giving me opportunity and I thank the everlasting Buddha that blesses and encourage me to do more. Please forgive my poor English in the following and note how much cultural education I was accumulating then.

This is the Mahayana text which has to do with awakening a very special mind in your world-system, which wishes to be free. It is like the animal activist group PETA – they go to laboratories and open cages to free the animals, and many of the animals just sit in their cages. They don’t know what freedom is. In the same way, ordinary human beings don’t even know the name of freedom yet. You could say, “It’s possible to be free,” and they would say, “That’s nice. What’s on TV tonight?”

Those of you who are irrepressible in your anxiety – it’s like an anxiety but a good kind of anxiety – that wants not just to experience, not just like gathering another kind of experience…you go white-water rafting and then you go to Hawaii and you’d like to experience what it’s like in Machu Piccu. Not just gathering experience but being free of like…if you were made to walk on a sidewalk that was all pins and you were beings continuously punctured by needles and pins. Like that, you have a continuous source of suffering which cannot be stilled except through the enlightened state.

Intelligent human beings go around and around and around on this. “If only the nuclear power plants were be closed down, I know the world would be a happy place and we could all be happy together.” So they close down as many as they can, and when they close down the last one will the world be a perfect and ideal place to live? In the 1300’s they thought this; not about nuclear power plants but something else. In the year 1000 they thought this. The year Jesus was born they were thinking all about this. “Wouldn’t it be nice if the King of Judiah would just stop taxing, I know the world would be a wonderful place.” On and on and on. If only this would happen then I know everything would be OK.

On a larger scale and on an individual scale…“If I could only finish college I’d be OK” or “If only I get my retirement pension then everything will be OK.” That would be better because at least you would be free of having to go to work every day.

Like that, you have a certain level which you have something marvelous happen to you individually where you were able to touch that suffering. And your response was, “I don’t want to suffer like that anymore. I don’t want to suffer anymore.” Like that, you have a certain rebellion. You’re not listening to the main drummer anymore…the rock ‘n’ roll and all of these things. You are not only willing but you are actively turning back and wanting to go home. This wanting to go home becomes a litany.

Guru is looking so carefully now through American eyes as the manifestations of this anxiety. You truly don’t have yogic methods from the time you are very young in order to entice your inner. There are wonderful wonderful religious outer practices and there are some inner practices too, but you don’t have an inner practice. That is what we Tibetans are very very good at.

I myself have gone around for lifetimes and lifetimes and lifetimes. Your country is very young; all of these lifetimes I’ve been busy over Tibet side all the time that your country is growing up. You just put down the roads not too long ago and now you have telephone and everything coming. So we decide OK, now they’re ready (laughter). We call you on the telephone and we say, “Put the tea kettle on because we Tibetans are coming now.”

This is truly my first time coming America side, so I’m studying very hard in general, and specifically with my students, what is the manifestation of this anxiety; this angst, my American way would say. “Something’s wrong, something’s wrong. What am I going to do? I need a spiritual path.” OK, look it up in the phonebook and find out where it is.

For my students, I am watching the individual. I’m not watching you as a group. In that way, we’re not going to go around year after year after year after year looking at the same thing again and again and again. I have expectations according to your own abilities. And on the other hand, I’m watching you to make sure that from your side…how do they say? You can lead a horse to water. So your own process must be alive within the possibilities of receiving the teachings here.


  1. You know Rinpoche...I experienced this before I was a student...this not wanting to suffer anymore, and always looking for a way to be ok...but nothing I did or changed ever made everything ok. I don't feel that people in the West are really presented with any notion that there is a way out...that freedom even exists. We are taught that to be happy you have a good family, a good career, money, stuff, and if that doesn't do it...then maybe you keep looking for a new hobby or group to join...or you go to your doctor and get a prescription for anti-depressants...so much mental suffering...

  2. Such a blessing to read these thoughts & stories. Thank you.


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